Harvard Catalyst Profiles

Contact, publication, and social network information about Harvard faculty and fellows.

Medical Futility

"Medical Futility" is a descriptor in the National Library of Medicine's controlled vocabulary thesaurus, MeSH (Medical Subject Headings). Descriptors are arranged in a hierarchical structure, which enables searching at various levels of specificity.

The absence of a useful purpose or useful result in a diagnostic procedure or therapeutic intervention. The situation of a patient whose condition will not be improved by treatment or instances in which treatment preserves permanent unconsciousness or cannot end dependence on intensive medical care. (From Ann Intern Med 1990 Jun 15;112(12):949)


This graph shows the total number of publications written about "Medical Futility" by people in Harvard Catalyst Profiles by year, and whether "Medical Futility" was a major or minor topic of these publication.
Bar chart showing 79 publications over 25 distinct years, with a maximum of 7 publications in 2014
To see the data from this visualization as text, click here.
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Funded by the NIH National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences through its Clinical and Translational Science Awards Program, grant number UL1TR002541.